Turkey’s Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) on Aug. 1 launched an investigation into Disney+ over reportedly not streaming its own production “Atatürk” series.
The move came after the reports that the digital platform will not stream its series about the founder of the Republic of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, upon the call of the Armenian National Committee of America. “Atatürk” series was planned to premiere on Oct. 29, the centennial of the foundation of the Republic.
“Thank you to all who joined ANCA's campaign against glorifying genocidal Turkish killer Kemal Atatürk- preventing the normalization of mass murder for audiences of millions worldwide,” the Armenian National Committee of America said on Twitter on July 31.
Thank you to all who joined ANCA's campaign against #Disney glorifying genocidal Turkish killer Kemal #Ataturk - preventing the normalization of mass murder for audiences of millions worldwide. pic.twitter.com/gOOYAtoPS9— ANCA (@ANCA_DC) July 31, 2023
RTÜK head Ebubekir Şahin announced on Aug. 1 that they launched an investigation into Disney+ over the reports.
“Based on the public information that the Disney+ has decided not to stream 'Atatürk' on its platform, it has been decided to take the defense of the organization and initiate an investigation. Gazi Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of our Republic of Turkey, is our most important social value. The allegations of Armenian lobby intervention, which are reflected in the press, are meticulously investigated,” Şahin said on Twitter.
“Disney +” isimli dijital medya hizmet sağlayıcının yerli içerik olan “Atatürk” dizisini platformunda yayınlamama kararı aldığına dair kamuoyuna yansıyan bilgilerden hareketle kuruluşun savunmasının alınmasına ve inceleme başlatılmasına karar verilmiştir.— Ebubekir Şahin (@ebekirsahin) August 1, 2023
The reports stirred a huge reaction on Turkish social media and among politicians.
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Spokesperson Ömer Çelik said “It is shameful that an American-based TV series/film platform succumbed to pressure from the Armenian lobby and canceled the TV series 'Atatürk' without broadcasting it.”
"As we have stated on various occasions before, this so-called genocide network in the USA is using historical events as a tool for the politics of lies. The sole purpose of this lobby is to prevent the normalization of Turkey-Armenia relations, as has been repeatedly seen. The activities of these networks have no effect before Atatürk and the Republic of Turkey. Shame on those who succumb to these networks," Çelik said in a series of tweets.
Bu şebekelerin faaliyetleri, Atatürk ve Türkiye Cumhuriyeti karşısında hiç hükmündedir. Bu şebekelere boyun eğenler utansın…— Ömer Çelik (@omerrcelik) August 1, 2023
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Deputy Mustafa Sarıgül called “all citizens in Turkey and in the world” to boycott the streaming platform.